Is Providence "Practical"? A Historical Anecdote

Wednesday, 06 Jun 2007

Even committed confessional Protestants can view the doctrine of providence with mixed feelings. Yes, it is biblical. Yes, it glorifies God. Yet it raises difficult questions about the existence of evil and our ability to make free choices. And, after all, what practical difference could this doctrine make in our daily lives? In the late sixteenth century, the inhabitants of Maldon, England, could have answered that question with authority. In their case, a healthy doctrine of providence literally saved lives. Maldon and its surroundings were witchcraft hotspots. In 1572, Mary Cowpar and her father were apparently bewitched by ...

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